DFS Early Look: Week 11


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DFS Early Look: Week 11

Another week of NFL football is in the books, which means that more NFL football is right around the corner. With both Fanduel and DraftKings having released their Week 11 DFS pricing, it’s time to look ahead to next Sunday’s DFS slate.

Here are the most glaring values I’ve found after analyzing pricing.

Dak Prescott, QB, Dallas Cowboys (AT KC)

DraftKings: $7,200 (QB5) | Fanduel: $8,400 (QB2)

Prescott has averaged 23.3 FPG since his brutal performance against LAC in Week 2, and has averaged 27.6 FPG in his last 11 healthy games (minus Week 2 vs LAC). 23.3 FPG is good for QB4 this season, and 27.6 FPG would constitute the 2nd-best QB fantasy season of all time.

And Now Dak gets the best matchup and scoring environment of Week 11.

This game total is 56.0, which isn’t just the highest total of Week 11, it’s the highest total by 5.5 points. We are looking at 11% more scoring here than the next closest game. Prescott has crushed these environments in his career, averaging 28.9 DraftKings FPG and 26.9 Fanduel FPG in games with a total higher than 52.5 (11 instances).

And the Chiefs defense is a complete disaster, allowing the 2nd-most FPG to opposing QBs (22.3), the 6th-most schedule-adjusted FPG to opposing QBs (+2.4), and ranking 6th-worst in Football Outsiders pass defense DVOA (23.7%).

Dak has been playing outstanding football, and now he gets a dream environment in every sense. I’d expect him to be the highest-owned QB of Week 11.

Christian McCaffrey, RB, Carolina Panthers (VS. WAS)

DraftKings: $8,900 (RB1) | Fanduel: $10,000 (RB1)

CMC was the 4th-highest scoring RB of Week 10, scoring 26.1 FPG on 13 carries and 10 targets - despite getting tackled inside the 2-yard-line an astonishing 3 times, and coming up just 5 yards short of the DraftKings 3-point bonus. So, he was just a stone's throw away from a slate-breaking 47.1 DraftKings points this week.

It’s safe to say CMC is officially back. And, if we take a look back at historical pricing, he’s even available at a discount if we assume he comes anywhere close to 2019-levels of volume.

CMC was only cheaper than his Week 11 DraftKings price 5 times in 2019, and he’s $766 cheaper than his average DK price throughout the 2019 season. On Fanduel, he’s only been cheaper than his Week 11 price tag once since Week 10 of 2019, and that one instance was last week.

McCaffrey draws a solid matchup in Week 11, facing a Washington defense that’s allowed the 8th-most schedule-adjusted FPG to opposing RBs (+4.1) and crucially, just lost their best defender in Chase Young to a torn ACL.

After a 23-touch outing on Sunday, it should be obvious CMC will get peppered with targets and carries — granted it’s worth noting his TD equity is lower with Cam Newton starting. We saw Newton vulture two goalline TDs on Sunday, and I would expect that trend to continue as long as he’s the starter (Newton is expected to start in Week 11). Still, CMC was a fantasy cheat code with Newton starting in 2018, averaging 24.1 FPG. Even if we accept the reduced TD equity, 24.1 FPG would still lead all non-Derrick Henry RBs this season — and is 3.0 FPG more than the next closest RB (Jonathan Taylor). And if he’s better than that, say, 2019 CMC, then he’s probably 40% more valuable than the next closest RB on the slate, despite only being priced 7% higher than the RB2 (by salary) on DraftKings and 11% higher than the RB2 on Fanduel.

Expect CMC chalk in Week 11.

James Conner, RB, Arizona Cardinals (AT SEA)

DraftKings: $6,100 (RB13) | Fanduel: $7,200 (RB12)

Conner’s first week as the Cardinals’ lead back didn’t exactly go great, as he scored 15.4 fantasy points in a game where Arizona was dominated from start to finish, losing 34 to 10. When an offense scores just 10 points and earns 169 net yards, it’s nearly impossible for their starting RB to be on a tournament-winning team. But, those numbers did come with both Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins out. Given that PFF lists Kyler Murray as a 7-point improvement over a replacement-level QB (and tied as the 2nd-most valuable QB in football), it’s easy to see how this offense failed in Week 10.

Conner is off the board as a potential play should Murray sit out in Week 11, given the massive difference the MVP candidate has made to the Cardinals offense. But should Murray play, then I’ll be looking at Conner as one of the top RB plays of the slate.

Conner’s Week 10 usage suggests he’s looking at somewhere between 70-85% of backfield snaps and touches, and for a backfield that has averaged 26.3 FPG this season, that would translate to 18.4 to 22.3 FPG. Or, somewhere between the RB7 (D’Andre Swift) and the RB2 (Jonathan Taylor).

And, assuming Kyler plays, this is an outstanding game environment, offering the 3rd-highest total (50.0) of the Week 11 main slate. Plus the Seahawks have been vulnerable to RBs this season, allowing the 3rd-most schedule-adjusted FPG (+6.8) and the most receiving FPG to opposing RBs (15.8) - an important note given Conner has averaged 4.5 targets per game in Chase Edmonds’ absence.

It will be interesting to see how ownership shakes out, but should Kyler Murray play, Conner being anything less than one of the 5 highest-owned RBs on this slate is almost certainly a mistake.

A.J. Dillon, RB, Green Bay Packers (AT MIN)

DraftKings: $6,200 (RB12) | Fanduel: $7,000 (RB15)

Dillon saw a career-high 23 touches on Sunday after Aaron Jones went down with an MCL sprain. Jones is doubtful in Week 11, and that opens the door for Dillon to lead a backfield that ties with Arizona as the 9th-most productive in fantasy football, averaging 26.3 FPG.

Once Jones went down near the end of the 3rd quarter, Dillon earned 86% of the Packers backfield opportunities and played on 84% of the team’s snaps. If we assume similar usage going forward, then Dillion is looking at approximately 22.4 FPG until Jones returns. That number would make Dillon the most valuable non-Derrick Henry RB in fantasy football on a per game basis. Green Bay drafted Dillon in Round 2 as the successor to Aaron Jones, and I’d expect the Packers to feed him at least in part to justify that questionable decision.

Minnesota is a fairly neutral matchup for opposing RBs, and with Dillon locked into 20 touches on a team with a strong implied total of 26.0, I’d expect him to potentially be the highest-owned RB of Week 11.

Tyreek Hill, WR, Kansas City Chiefs (VS. DAL)

DraftKings: $8,200 (WR2) | Fanduel: $8,500 (WR1)

Hill is looking at far and away the best usage of his career. He’s on pace to set career-high marks in targets per game with 11.1 (+2.1 from his previous career high), 3.0 red zone targets per game (+0.1), and 20.9 XFP per game (+3.9). That’s crucial to note, as Hill is a player who has historically always exceeded his expectation. 11.1 targets per game for Hill is simply more valuable than for nearly any other NFL WR.

Arguably more important, Hill is playing in the best scoring environment of Week 11, with a total of 56.0. In his career, Hill has averaged 24.7 DraftKings FPG and 20.1 Fanduel FPG in games with a total over 54.0 (23 instances). Those numbers, if extrapolated over the full season, lead all slate-eligible WRs by 2.3 DK points and 2.5 FD points. And Hill has scored over 40.0 DraftKings points an incredible 5 times in that sample (22% hit rate).

No player has comparable slate-breaking upside to Tyreek Hill. Given his usage and this scoring environment, I’d be shocked if he wasn’t the highest-owned top-8 WR (by salary) on this slate.

Brandin Cooks, WR, Houston Texans (AT TEN)

DraftKings: $6,000 (WR17) | Fanduel: $6,600 (WR19)

In his last 6 games without Will Fuller but with a non-Davis Mills QB (Tyrod Taylor or Deshaun Watson), Cooks has averaged 10.3 targets per game, 103.2 YFS per game, and 19.9 FPG. Among WRs this season, those numbers rank 6th-, 3rd-, and 4th-best. Could you argue that’s a cherry-picked sample? Sure. But, that doesn’t change the result: Cooks has played like a WR1 with anything resembling competent QB play since Fuller departed Houston. Taylor isn’t the same level of QB that Watson is, but he’s surely better than Mills, and although Taylor’s first game back from injury went about as badly as possible, we have a long track record of league-average QB play from the 11-year veteran.

That brings us back to Cooks, who is the primary beneficiary of what should (hopefully) be league-average play from Tyrod Taylorgoing forward. Thankfully for both Taylor and Cooks, this Titans defense is one of the best ‘get right’ spots in fantasy football. Tennessee has allowed the 3rd-most schedule-adjusted FPG to opposing WRs (+6.6), the 6th-most FPG to opposing outside WRs (25.3), and the 10th-most schedule-adjusted FPG to opposing WR1s (+1.8). And the Texans are 10.5-point underdogs - the largest spread of the slate - suggesting Houston will likely have to throw as much, or even more, than any Week 11 main slate team. We can safely assume Cooks will get peppered with targets, and that should make him a popular Week 11 play.

Michael Gallup, WR, Dallas Cowboys (AT KC)

DraftKings: $4,200 (WR47) | Fanduel: $5,400 (WR47)

In his first game back from injured reserve, Gallup recorded a pedestrian 5 targets, finishing the day with 7.2 fantasy points. Still, he ran a route on 63% of Dak Prescott’s dropbacks and recorded 2 red zone targets, clearly reestablishing himself as the Cowboys No. 3 WR. That’s not a role I expect to be targeting much week-to-week, but Week 11 presents the Cowboys with the best scoring environment on this slate, with Dallas facing Kansas City in the highest total of the slate by 5.5-points.

The KC defense has allowed the 10th-most passing yards per game (258.6) and rank 6th-worst in Football Outsiders pass defense DVOA. Given that 2 of the 3 highest-scoring fantasy outings of Gallup’s NFL career have come in games with a total over 50.0, this is going to be one of the best spots to roster the Cowboys’ WR this season. I’d expect to have most of my Gallup exposure in games stacks, but I also don’t mind him as a one-off play as this game is almost certain to generate quite a few tournament-winning fantasy performances.

Darren Waller, TE, Las Vegas Raiders (VS. CIN)

DraftKings: $6,100 (TE3) | Fanduel: $6,700 (TE4)

Since the start of 2020, Waller has averaged 9.0 targets per game and 16.0 FPG. Both of those numbers would rank 2nd this season, just 10% and 1% less than the TE1, Travis Kelce. Yet, somehow, Waller isn’t the TE2 (by salary) on either DFS site this week and is 16.4% cheaper than Kelce on DraftKings and 9% cheaper than him on Fanduel. And this is the cheapest Waller has been on DraftKings since Week 13 of 2020, and the cheapest he has been on Fanduel since Week 9 of 2020.

Outside of the best ‘buy-low’ opportunity on Waller in nearly a year, we are also looking at a favorable scoring environment, with this game's 49.0 total clocking in as the 5th-highest of the Week 11 main slate. If you haven’t been able to tell so far, the Cowboys vs. Chiefs game will absorb a substantial amount of ownership, and I’d be fairly surprised if Travis Kelce isn’t the highest-owned TE on the slate. Cincinnati is a neutral matchup for opposing TEs, but given the relatively favorable scoring environment, I’m certainly intrigued by Waller as a pivot off the Kelce chalk. And it’s not without merit, as Waller has averaged 19.1 DraftKings FPG and 14.5 Fanduel FPG in the 19 games he’s played in the last two seasons with a total over 47.5.

Jake Tribbey is the 2022 FSWA Football Writer of the Year and the leading Spring Football expert in the fantasy industry. He is a lifelong football fan obsessed with extracting every edge possible from DFS, Best Ball, and player props/futures.